Your resume is your personal sales brochure – often the first glimpse a prospective employer has of you as they consider you as a candidate. The last thing you want to do is waste resume space detailing work that has nothing to do with the job being offered. But at the same time, you don’t want to omit years of work that helped develop you as a professional.
Use these tips to convert unrelated but important work experience, to give yourself the best shot at the job.
- Use the right words.
As you finalize your resume, three of your most valuable words will be “Additional experience includes …” It’s perfectly fine to sum up large portions of your career experience in one sentence.
- Your summary may read, “Public relations positions with ABC, PQR and XYZ Agencies (1990 – 2000).”
- If your work was unrelated to the job, simply list the companies.
- Play the age game.
If you’re older or concerned with possible age discrimination, summarize multiple years of experience into a single sentence. It’s relevant, so you don’t want to remove it from your resume. However, do not include the years that this experience encompassed.
- Focus on experience versus education.
Use this tactic to show you are a more experienced professional than your education suggests. Perhaps you worked for several years before going back to school to complete your degree. You’re already an experienced manager, and it’s important to highlight this strength.
You can best describe your past job experience in a variety of ways, depending on your individual situation.
- You may have held several positions with one employer. You rose through the ranks. While this demonstrates that you were promoted repeatedly, it also can consume a lot of resume space. Summarize these jobs with a lead-in like “Early Positions.” this list only the titles and a date range that covers them all: “Early Positions: Clerk, Sales Associate and Senior Associate – May 2008 to April 2011.”
- You may have had jobs that were more distinctive than relevant. Some positions may not relate to your current career goals, but include responsibilities you don’t want to omit. For instance, you may have worked as a fast-food restaurant manager while in college. This may not mean much to your IT career, but you do want to show that you’ve had successful management experience. In this case, your summary statement may read, “Previous Career Experience: Managed a crew of 15 at a local franchise of a national fast food outlet.”
If you need more guidance to perfect your resume, as well as mastering the additional steps to find your next great job, read our related posts or contact the specialized recruiters at PrideStaff Modesto today.